WASHINGTON, DC - Today, the American Military Partner Association ( AMPA ) responded to the news that Rep. Jackie Speier ( D-CA ) plans to introduce federal legislation to lift the ban on transgender service members in the military caused by outdated regulations.
"It's far past time for this unjust ban that harms our transgender service members and their families to end," said AMPA President Ashley Broadway-Mack. "While the Department of Defense could easily do this without action from Congress by updating the military's outdated regulations, we applaud Rep. Speier for her strong leadership in working to end the ban. All service members deserve to be able to serve our nation openly and honestly without fear of being fired for something as fundamentally basic as their gender identity."
In March, AMPA released a joint report with the Transgender American Veterans Association ( TAVA ) highlighting the tremendous harm inflicted on the entire military family unit by the outdated regulations.
According to The Hill, "A spokesman for Speier's office said she could introduce the legislation next month."
Today's news follows growing momentum to end the ban on transgender troops. Earlier this month, the American Medical Association approved a resolution saying there is "no medically valid reason to exclude transgender individuals from service in the U.S. military." Both the U.S. Army and the U.S. Air Force have recently made changes requiring a higher level review of discharge authority for transgender troops. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, the Secretary of the Air Force, and the Navy's top enlisted Sailor have all made public statements expressing support for open and honest service by anyone who is qualified to do the job.
The Department of Defense recently added non-discrimination protections for gay and lesbian service members by updating the military equal opportunity program to include sexual orientation as a protected category. These same protections need to be extended to transgender service members based on gender identity.
For more information about the American Military Partner Association and LGBT military families, please visit our home on the web at www.MilitaryPartners.org .
The American Military Partner Association, a non-profit and non-partisan organization, is the nation's largest organization for the partners, spouses, families, and allies of America's LGBT service members and veterans. Based in Washington DC, AMPA is committed to education, advocacy, and support for our "modern military families."